As populations continue to migrate from rural to urban areas, space is at a premium. Many settlements are becoming ever-more congested – with adequate, affordable housing in short supply and transport systems struggling to serve their respective residents. But as much the conversation about urbanization is about people, it is sometimes also about the animals that come with those people – urban livestock that play a key role at providing sustenance on an individual level, in addition to becoming an avenue for communal trade.
Waste Management: The Latest Architecture and News
The scene is almost identical, no matter which borough of New York City you’re in. Narrow sidewalks are lined by mountains of trash bags and other large objects, waiting for their turn to be taken away by the fleet of sanitary workers and trucks who will dispose of them. Large rodents seek shelter in their temporary plastic homes, feeding on discarded scraps, becoming a regular sighting for New York City residents. The City That Never Sleeps has a bigger problem than the flashing lights and noisy streets- it’s all of the trash that’s left to sit out on the sidewalks.
As the world population grows, designers look to develop the seas. Architecture and planning firm, URBAN POWER strategically designed nine man-made islands off the southern coast of Copenhagen to combat many of the city’s impending challenges. The islets, called Holmene, address demands for tech space, fossil-free energy production, flood barriers, and even public recreation space.
With rising sea levels and incessant consumption of plastic, the state of the earth's oceans is rapidly deteriorating. Instead of discarding or burning this plastic, architects Erik Goksøyr and Emily-Claire Goksøyr questioned whether any architectural potential exists in this neglected material. By conducting an extensive material study, the duo designed three prototypes to postulate this theory.
Though starting out as a humble thesis, this project is being actualized under the organization, Out of Ocean. From the shores of the Koster Islands in Sweden, plastic samples were collected and studied for their various material performance in areas such as color, texture, light, and translucency.
Photographer Aldo Amoretti has captured new images of one of 2018’s most awaited projects, as the BIG designed Amager Bakke Waste-to-Energy Plant takes shape in Copenhagen, complete with an SLA-designed park and ski slope. The images show to the completed power plant, which opened in March 2017, while work progresses on the 170,000-square-foot (16,000-square-meter) park and ski slope that will cap the scheme.
Initially master planned by BIG, the unique design seeks to reclaim a typically unused element of a building for the public through the introduction of the nature-filled program. During summer months, the SLA-designed rooftop activity park will provide visitors with hiking trails, playgrounds, fitness structures, trail running, climbing walls, and of course, incredible views. In the winter, the park will be joined by over 1,640 feet (500 meters) of ski slopes designed by BIG.
Six teams have been shortlisted to design the world's largest waste-to-energy plant in Shenzhen, China: Arup, Atkins, AECOM, Gerber Architekten, Schmidt Hammer Lassen with Gottlieb Paludan Architects, and local firm Tanghua Architects. Aiming to manage Shenzhen's growing population (and waste accumulation), the "Shenzhen East Waste-to-Energy Plant" plans to incinerate 5000 tonnes of waste daily and generate an estimated 550 million kWh per year.
With the rise of urban dwellers comes the rise of urban waste. And, although the hidden life of garbage is still ignored by many, there is no way of escaping one of modern societies most pressing issues: unsustainable waste management. Though many plausible and obvious solutions have already been suggested and are ready to be implemented, some experts are proposing radical solutions that may one day be a reality.
Cook County, Illinois, recently brought the elimination of construction waste to a new level by creating the first demolition debris ordinance in the Midwest. This groundbreaking ordinance requires most of the debris created from demolition to be recycled and reused instead of being sent to the landfill. The ordinance helps contribute to Cook County’s zero waste goal, part of the Solid Waste Plan Update.
The new law states that at least 7 percent of suburban construction and demolition debris must be recycled, and an additional 5 percent must be reused on residential properties. This new legislation will have a great impact as it affects about 2.5 million suburban Cook County residents.
More after the break...
A small group of students and architect Tobias Holler of sLAB Costa Rica at the New York Institute of Technology, have teamed up to design and build a communal recycling center for Nosara, Costa Rica – a city that is facing grave problems with sanitation and illegal dumping of garbage on beaches and in wildlife areas. Construction started last summer after a Kickstarter campaign that raised $15,000 helped provide expenses and costs associated with housing the students that assisted with the construction. A relaunch of the Kickstarter campaign will provide the project with additional funds to bring the students back to accelerate the pace of construction. The funds also support the documentary by Ayana de Vos, whose film follows the progress of the project and features waste management and sustainability in Costa Rica.
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The motivation behind building a Communal Recycling Center is based in the severe problems that Nosara specifically, and Costa Rica in general, has in municipal waste management. Without appropriate infrastructure and policies, over 1400 tons of waste is deposited into unregulated dumps daily. A lot of the garbage makes its way into rivers and forests, pollutes ground water, threatens the health of local communities and destroys wildlife.